In response to Oregon Sen. Vicki Walker's comments concerning
the recent ICC wired glass code change, Thomas Zaremba, representing
the wired glass industry made the following statement to USGlass:
"It is unfortunate that a topic as serious as this would
deteriorate into an exchange of press releases. As evidence of
this, responses like Sen. Walker's are so replete with inaccuracies
and hyperbole that the glass industry would be remiss not to correct
the record. Without responding point-by-point, the facts are as
· As many of your readers know, the ICC structural committee
was charged with the responsibility for assessing the technical
merits of S85-03/04. Prior to last week's vote, the structural
committee voted by an overwhelming margin to disapprove S85-03/04.
The reason for disapproval was succinctly stated by the committee:
"The burden on the proponent to substantiate the proposal
has not been met." No new evidence or information was presented
at the hearing in Kansas to alter this conclusion.
· With over 225 votes cast, the code change was approved
by a narrow margin of only nine votes.
· Contrary to what proponents of the proposal would have
the general public believe, and consistent with the best body
of data available, the wired glass product that is the subject
of S85-03/04 represents the best product presently available for
the intended application-i.e., fire related assemblies not found
in hazardous educational occupancy locations or athletic facilities.
There are alternative products available, but objective evaluations
reveal that each presents its own set of issues, including risks
to the health and safety of the general public. In fact, a code
change proposal submitted by one of Senator Walker's own supporters
would have allowed extensive use in schools of tempered glass
unable to withstand thermal shocks typically experienced in building
fires. Fortunately, this attempt to substantially reduce the fire
protection afforded in our schools was disapproved, first by the
Life Safety Committee and, again, in Kansas last week.
· Although Sen. Walker talks of "David" vs.
"Goliath," the truth is that the corporate interests
that funded and supported this proposal stand to gain significant
market shares for their products that compete with wired glass
if S85-03/04 is ultimately adopted.
Editor's note: We will accept one more response from Sen.
Walker and will then no longer post rebuttals on USGNN.com